While the “greening” of our lifestyles is becoming more apparent, and our awareness of conserving natural resources is reaching new levels, it is still unusual to find a store that practices all that is being preached.
It is hard to predict if these types of stores will multiply and prosper in the future. That all depends on how consumers worldwide view stores with a mission to draw environmentally conscious patrons, or to educate those who want to learn more.
One such example exists in the small community of Geneva, Ill., where a shop called Peaceful Parlour recently opened its doors. “Many things in the store are made from things we saved from going into the landfill,” store owner Shari Ralish explains.
That would include hammocks made from hemp or recycled plastic bottles; door mats created from wasted fishermen’s ropes; and organic, cotton shopping bags that are alternatives to plastic bags.
The “green” toys in the shop are made from recycled plastic milk jugs and have no small parts that could be dangerous to children. “The toys in here are ‘Alexander approved,’” Ralish said, referring to testing the products on her son Alexander first. Recycled cardboard furniture and botanical paints also are available for children.Feeding spoons and baby bowls are made from bamboo, Ralish said, emphasizing that many items in her store are “natural earth products that have no toxins.”
Ralish said she “avoids plastics in any we can” when choosing products to sell.
Rainwater diversion kits for creating rain benches or rain barrels are also on display, along with various plant-based cream moisturizers, oils and mists that are targeted for different sensations, from calming to energizing fragrances.
Household items and some furniture pieces are made from re-used fabrics, assuring that original items are getting second or third uses. “We are hoping as more people learn about us, they will stop in for a visit,” Ralish said.